New Delhi: The Intelligence Fusion & Strategic Operations (IFSO) unit of Delhi Police has arrested three men for allegedly cheating more than 1,000 persons across the country to the tune of Rs 17 lakh by issuing forged certificates and IDs related to the Common Service Centres (CSC), an official said on Thursday.
The accused have been identified as Monu Sharma (24), Kuldeep Singh (27) and Chitresh Goyal (26), all residents of Sikar in Rajasthan.
Common Service Centres are the physical facilities for delivering government e-Services to rural and remote locations where availability of computers and internet is negligible or generally absent.
These centres are the access points for delivery of various Government-to-Citizen (G2C) e-Services in the field of healthcare, finance, education, agriculture etc. It is a pan-India network catering to regional, geographic, linguistic and cultural diversity of the country, thus enabling the government's mandate of a socially, financially and digitally-inclusive society.
The Deputy Commissioner of Police (IFSO), Prashant Gautam, said: "Akhileshwar Yadav, Consultant (Vigilance) at CSC e-Governance Services India Limited, had lodged a complaint with IFSO stating that the services are a special purpose vehicle (SPV), which provides a centralised collaborative framework for the delivery of various G2C and B2C services to the citizens through CSCs."
"The complainant also alleged that a fraudulent website -- http://csccentrapreneru.com/ -- which is not at all associated to the CSC e-Governance Services India Ltd has copied its webpage design which is dedicated to TEC (Telecom Entrepreneur Certificate) courses," said the officer.
It was further alleged in the complaint that some unknown persons were misrepresenting that they can facilitate the registration as a Village Level Entrepreneur (VLE) and can allot CSC ID without any examination after paying a certain amount.
"Besides, they were also charging money to approve the CSC ID, certificates etc. on behalf of the complainant company," Gautam said.
During investigation, it was found that the fake website had been created with the name 'Indian Guru Sharma'.
"On inquiry, the ID's registered mobile number was found to be subscribed in the name of Monu. Further, two mobile numbers were also identified which were being used for cheating the victims. Both the numbers were found to be issued in the name of Chitresh," the DCP said.
However, both the accused were not found residing on the registered addresses.
"The team conducted an investigation and succeeded in tracing the alleged persons," the officer said.
The police teams conducted raids in Rajasthan and apprehended Monu along with his associate Kuldeep. On their instance, Chitresh was nabbed from a hotel in Jaipur.
On interrogation, it was revealed that Chitresh was the mastermind of this network.
"Chitresh created the fake website. Whenever any person would open this fake website, it would take him to the home page, where there was an option to apply for CSC ID after paying a certain amount," said the DCP.
There was also a payment link on the webpage, which was connected to the bank account of Chitresh's mother.
"Chitresh and his associates had also created various WhatsApp groups to put their advertisements about providing CSC IDs, TEC certificates, RAP (Rural Authorised Person) certificates, IIBF (Indian Institute of Banking & Finance) certificates and VLE-INS (Village Level Entrepreneur Insurance) certificates to cheat the victims," said the officer.
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